Veran Matić honored with Sretenje Medal

On the occasion of Serbian Statehood Day, on the ceremonial meeting in the Serbian National Assembly, President of the Board of Directors of B92 Fund and RTV B92 has been today awarded with the Sretenje Medal of honor of the third class “for carrying out social humanitarian campaign ’Battle for the Babies’ that contributed to the general welfare of the citizens of the Republic of Serbia“.

The ceremony in Belgrade on Friday
The ceremony in Belgrade on Friday

After the trust that the citizens, health institutions, media, companies and organizations that took part in it had shown towards this campaign, after the numerous awards that this campaign had won on international and local festivals, the highest decoration had come from the state leadership which, with this gesture of presenting its initiator with the medal, had shown that it recognized that the whole campaign has been launched and carried out for the sake of the future generations in Serbia.

“Large number of problems of our society today ensues from the basic distrust among people, the lack of trust in institutions, in themselves... With our campaigns, we resolve not only concrete issues, but we also managed to regain citizens’ trust into humanity, solidarity, into the idea that it is possible to do something generous, thus making the society better and more humane“, President of the Board of Directors of B92 Fund Veran Matić had said upon receiving the medal. He added that this decoration belongs to all involved in the “Battle for the Babies“ who helped in its success, thus sending the message to the wider community to continue to unite themselves in their attempt to help those in need, so that we could all together participate in making better conditions for health, education and security of all the citizens.

“It is of utmost importance that media protect public interest through impartial reporting, but this public interest, as well as the interest of the individuals, should be protected in concrete campaigns as well“, Matić underlined.

The results of the “Battle for the Babies“ speak for itself – with the participation of more than a million citizens and over 700 companies, for less than a year, more than EUR 2.5 million had been collected, while 208 incubators were provided and delivered for more than 60 medical institutions in 50 cities of Serbia, with which overall needs for incubators had been entirely met. The biggest institution in the country that takes care of the most difficult medical cases of the little heroes from the whole Serbia, Institute for Neonatology, had completely equipped itself with those devices with 51 acquired incubators, while additional funds had been provided for the reconstruction of the intensive care unit and elevator construction within the Institute.

As a follow up of this campaign, the campaign “Battle for Maternity Wards“, had brought new challenges and new victories – from July 2012 to February 2013, various devices for the neonatology and gynecology units had been provided amounting to around EUR 1.400.000 for more than 50 medical institutions in Serbia. Two maternity wards in Novi Sad were completely equipped, along with the maternity wards in Vrsac, Sremska Mitrovica, Leskovac, Pancevo and Kraljevo.

The campaign “Vote for the Babies“ during which over 180.000 signatures of the citizens were collected for a week, and along with the support of the coalition of organizations such as Association Parent, Halo Beba service, web portal Bebac.com and Network of organizations for the children of Serbia, had achieved implementation of the amendments on the Law on VAT, so starting from February 1, 2013, refunding of VAT on certain baby equipment and food had been exercised.

The campaign “Battle for the Babies“ expanded to Croatia, where we assist parent association “Palcic“ to help their health institutions in the same way, while in Bosnia and Herzegovina, the campaign has been carried out in partnership with m:tel company and after six month period, 36 out of necessary 70 incubators for more than 25 health institutions had been provided in all three entities in Bosnia and Herzegovina.

For the last couple of years, B92 Fund had conveyed several big socially responsible campaigns such as Safe houses, in which 5 safe houses for the victims of family violence had been constructed and furnished, in the amount worth EUR 750.000, then the acquisition of the mobile digital mammography unit for the Institute for Oncology, worth more than half a million EUR, transfusion bus for the Institute for blood transfusion worth around EUR 200.000, as well as making the continuous work of the soup kitchens possible within the campaign Food for All and Food for the Enclaves, with the assistance in financial funds and goods amounting to more than EUR 1 million. In the latest “Battle for the Emergency Center“ for less than two months, around EUR 600.000 has been collected, out of which EUR 400.000 is total value of the provided equipment, while the rest is meant for the reconstruction of the Emergency Urology Unit. For the Clinic for Neurosurgery of the Serbian Clinical Center, two surgical microscopes had been acquired of total value amounting to around EUR 140.000.

On the campaign “Battle for the Babies“

Agency Saatchi & Saatchi had offered creative support to the campaign “Battle for the Babies“ on pro bono basis, while the campaign was implemented with the generous assistance of the Agency Direct Media PR, that was responsible for overall public relations. Numerous sports associations, theaters, clubs, public figures, as well as the youngest promoters of the campaign from the large number of kindergartens and elementary schools from all parts of the country had assisted in the promotion of the campaign, in its various aspects.

Almost all media outlets in Serbia had joined the campaigns “Battle for the Babies“ and “Battle for Maternity Wards“ by donating advertising space and by reporting about them in the news and specialized programs. More than seventy news stories had been made for the main newscasts on all B92 platforms (television, web, radio), as well as on a special web site of the campaign www.bitkazabebe.rs. Media budget amounted to zero RSD.

The campaign had won numerous international, regional and domestic awards:

-Prestigious international EACA Care Grand Prix Award, that the Parliament of Europe and European Association of media and advertising agencies (EACA) give to the best humanitarian and socially responsible campaigns,

-Two silver medals on the 13th International Festival of Advertising campaigns “Golden Hammer“ in Latvia,

-4 awards on the International Festival of Creative Industry FORFEST in Budva, including the first award in the category Public Relations / Corporate PR

-First award in the category of the humanitarian projects on the WEBIT Congress in Sofia for the most successful digital, that is to say, web campaign,

-Gold medal for the best socially responsible campaign on the Festival of Serbian Quality “My Choice 2011".

-6 awards from the Economic Advertisers Association of Serbia (UEPS), out of which the most significant is gold medal for the best non-profit campaign and the best non-profit radio spot.

-Awards for the non-profit BTL campaign, 360° campaign, non-profit TV spot, as well as online project.

-“Battle for the Babies" had also won award as a non-profit campaign on the Night of Ad Eaters.

-With this project, Saatchi & Saatchi Belgrade had 5 nominations in 3 categories on the most significant international festival of creativity – Cannes Lions.

-Award on the INTERFER Festival for the best commercial reportage,

-Bronze medal in the category of socially responsible campaigns on the Festival Red Apple in Moscow,

-Award for the integrated campaign on one of the greatest advertising festivals, Cresta in New York.

-B92 had won main "Virtus 2012" Award for corporate philanthropy for its contribution on the national level in 2012 with the campaign "Battle for the Babies”.

Citizens and companies join the campaign via the web site www.bitkazaporodilista.rs and by getting into direct contact with B92 Fund via e-mail info@bitkazabebe.rs , while donations can be paid directly on B92 Fund’s bank account in Erste Bank no. 340-36233-65, or via sending SMS on the humanitarian number 3100 for all networks in Serbia (price of a single SMS being RSD 100), as well as by purchasing the products with Battle for the Babies label in 100 units of the Post Office of Serbia and in Vulkan bookstores.